Bailing on Detroit – Jamie Peck

Jamie Peck, Geography professor at The University of British Columbia, has written quite a bit about neoliberalism, what he calls “austerity urbanism” and the ongoing saga of Detroit’s finances. He has an insightful blog post on how terms like bailout, responsibility, and federalism are serving to seal Detroit’s fate as …

Detroit, bankruptcy, and the national pension fixation

The post I wish I had time to write: how easily people can imagine taking away a retiree’s pension, how small those pensions usually are, and how controversial the assessment of Detroit’s (and everyone else’s) actual pension problem is (for starters, Morningstar says Detroit followed industry practice for its pension …

In Embattled Detroit, No Talk of Sharing Pain – NYTimes.com

Detroit, currently under the governance of an emergency manager, seems destined for bankruptcy or mass default (it has already begun to default on some of its credit payments. Either scenario will be groundbreaking in municipal finance and in the power relationships between bankers, retirees, cities, and states. The impending battle …

“The Municipal Sandwich”

The municipal bond market’s view of city budget woes, via Goodwin Procter’s take on the Pew report about struggling cities (which is worth reading): A recent report issued by The Pew Charitable Trusts American Cities Project describes how the Great Recession has sandwiched municipalities between an increased demand for services …

Local Finances in New York State

New York’s State Comptroller has issued a report on local government finances that sounds a strong alarm. Local governments across New York State are collecting less in taxes, burning through their cash reserves and running up deficits. Differing visions emerge of where this leaves local governments, and the state: As …

Vallejo, California, austerity model

Vallejo becomes the model for post-bankruptcy urbanism – is this the future some people would like to see in American cities?: VALLEJO, CALIF. — The first couple of years were ugly. After this working-class port city became the largest in America to declare bankruptcy in 2008, crime and prostitution surged …

More on Suffolk County

Bloomberg’s coverage of the Suffolk County financial emergency. “You never want a good fiscal crisis to go to waste,” said Lawrence Levy, executive dean of the National Center for Suburban Studies at Hofstra University in Hempstead, New York. “If Suffolk doesn’t deal with its deficit in a way that Wall …